Reflecting on my 44th year...

When I turned 40 I did a whole series on Facebook called "40 days to 40" in which I posted something memorable about each year of my life. It was probably the most open and honest I had ever been in a public forum in my life up until that point. It felt scary and vulnerable to post publicly things about myself and my life that many people knew nothing about.  To review my life in that way gave me so much appreciation for the life I have lead and all the little miracles along the way. 

Since then I have taken time to fully review each year and post ALL of my highlights for each year. This will be the first time I put into into a blog post rather than on Facebook. 

My word for my 44th year was TRUST!

  • This was the year I took the biggest leap of faith in my life. One month after my birthday I was laid off from my job of three years due to my company losing a major contract. I knew about this for 9 months so I had time to prepare and decided I did not want to look for a full time social work job and instead wanted to expand my yoga therapy practice and yoga teaching. 
  • I expanded my yoga therapy practice to two days a week at Tucson Wellness Co-op. I love the sweet space I have there and sharing it with Renee and Jessica. This space has allowed me to expand my offerings and has been the perfect space to grow my practice. I will admit it has not grown as much as I had envisioned but I trust that I continue to put energy toward it, it will continue to expand. I feel blessed to have worked with the women whom have shown up and humbled to have been a companion on their journey towards wholeness and vibrant health. 
  • I started working at a behavioral health hospital and that has been an amazing ride of learning a whole different side of social work. After 10+ years in administrative social work, I have LOVED diving into direct practice and honing my clinical skills. I was originally hired to do about 8 hrs a week as a Recreation Therapist - running Yoga Therapy group in an inpatient setting. However I was then moved into being a Therapist and running 3-4 clinical groups a day with the ability to weave aspects of yoga into my groups. I then moved over to Intensive Outpatient to facilitate 3hr groups using a Dialectical Behavioral Therapy curriculum ~ where I start each of my groups with essential oils and a 15min mindfulness meditation. I loved this job so much I was finally inspired to work toward getting my MSW license so 16 years after graduating from my graduate program I am finally an LMSW. I currently work about 15-20hrs a week here and still help out on the inpatient side when they need me in multiple ways. 
  • I added a monthly Peaceful Pelvis Yoga class to my schedule. I love being able to offer a class that is unique and brings much needed awareness to the part of the body that is often ignored or misunderstood. I was interviewed by the Grateful Goddess, Shelia Sornsin and shared a brief pelvic breath exercise
  • I completed two training with Neil Pearson on Pain Care Yoga. These have been so helpful in managing my own chronic pain and in supporting my students. I am grateful to gain new understanding on the nervous system and how it impacts pain. 
  • I added a Gentle and Yin yoga class at Tucson Yoga on Tuesday mornings. I have wanted to teach a morning class ever since I let go of my Saturday morning class at LA Fitness. I love, love this class! There is such sweetness in teaching gentle movement and then guiding students to soften into a yin pose.  
  • Due to music licensing concerns, I stopped playing music from my ipod at Tucson Yoga and decided to play with the crystal bowls we have at the studio. Playing them brings me so much joy and a deeper dimension to my classes when I play them while students are in yin or restorative poses. A goal of 45 is to learn more and get my own bowl(s) so I can bring these sound offerings into my yoga therapy practice and other classes. 
  • I was hired at Miraval as a Yoga and Meditation facilitator as a sub. Every time I teach there I am so happy. Plus I have been able to expand the types of classes I teach and have gained more confidence in my own abilities. AND they have crystal bowls for all 7 chakras - I am in heaven when I get to play them during class!! Plus I love my co-workers, I never fail to leave there feeling inspired or learning something!
  • I partnered with Donna Rabuck to co-facilitate women's spirituality and yoga retreats. This has been a witnessing of my life coming full circle since the first retreat I ever attended was hers, 21 years ago. It has been such a delight to partner with my mentor, friend, and soul sister in creating luscious weekend retreats for women to slow down, connect to their own inner goddess, and trust the wisdom of their soul voice. 
  • I have been slowly, very slowing building a business with USANA, using their pharmaceutical grade nutritional supplements to improve my own health and the health of my customers. This is a growing edge for me but I will be sharing more about it in the future and love to talk about it if you want to know more. 
  • I went through a challenging unexpected break up. However we were able to leave the relationship in a kind and respectful way. This may have been my best breakup ever (if there is such a thing). I continue to celebrate the successes of my ex and we are continuing to navigate our way into a friendship that works for us.  
  • This breakup actual lead to some amazing things. One being my friendship with Frank Jude, whom I knew and admired as a yoga teacher, but had never gotten to know. Thanks to him I have expanded my whiskey knowledge and reawakened my love for movies. He also recommended me to teach Mindfulness for a social services retreat when he was unable to do it. Which was one of the most fun teachings experiences I have had in my life. I value him and our friendship immensely!
  • Speaking of Mindfulness - I was asked to do a lecture at TMC seniors center for their women's health month. It is amazing how effortless lectures and trainings are when they are on a topic you feel passionate about. This has lead to other opportunities in the next few months that I am very excited about.
  • I joined Empty Mountain Sangha, which was a haven for me during the early days of my breakup when my heart felt heavy and sore and I needed a safe place to sit and be still with all my emotions and whirling thoughts. I am so grateful for the new connections and friends I have made there. 
  • And I am slowly exploring a relationship with a new beloved. It was so unexpected that I wasn't sure I was ready or open to it when it arrived. Gratefully, I have listened to my heart over my head and am finding so much freedom and healing in this connection. 

44 has been a wild ride, I as read through this list, I feel so much immense gratitude and joy for my life. I recently described my life/schedule as a kaleidoscope since it is constantly changing and shifting. I expect 45 will hold many such surprises and challenges to support my ongoing growth and transformation. I am so excited to see what life holds....